Sport Rugby

Tuesday 21 November 2017

Conan stars in rout

Leinster U-19'A' 40 Ulster U-19 Clubs 3

There is something seriously wrong with the age-grade structures in Irish rugby when all four provinces cannot agree on an equitable, fair-minded way forward for what should be the U-19 Inter-Provincial Championship.

Instead, the Ulster coaches divided their time at this level between the Schools and Clubs teams, while Leinster made do with what were effectively 'A' and 'B' selections.

Therefore, the Leinster U-19 'A', if you can call them that, whacked Ulster U-19 Clubs at Donnybrook on Saturday before the prying eyes of IRFU high performance manager Allen Clarke, Leinster academy manager Colin McEntee and Trinity College director of rugby Tony Smeeth.

Make no mistake, this was a scouting occasion for all the provincial academies and, to this end, Leinster's captain Jack Conan, lock Alan O'Connor and out-half Peter Lydon caught the eye as Ulster were buried under an avalanche of second-half points.

Earlier, the Ulster U-19 Schools came from behind to edge out a Leinster U-19 'B' side 20-13 with late tries from impressive centre Peter Nelson and replacement Chris Best.

Leinster -- G O'Suilleabhain (J O'Hehir 61); M Corballis, S Murphy (R Holt 61), J Kearns, O O'Suilleabhain; P Lydon, M Walsh (S Barron 61); D Merrey, T Moran (C Tonge 65), T Furlong (J Cawley 65), A O'Connor, J Hinde (L Curran 54), D Mannion, B du Toit (R Marsh 65), J Conan (capt).

Ulster -- C Barber; T Acheson, A Morrison (M Allen 52, A Andress, A Pollock; R McMaster, H Doyle (B Uprichard 58); R Harrison (J Graham h-t), J Murphy, K Dickson (M Hylands h-t), L Bicker, C Tipping, N Mawhinney (J Ogilby 52), J Kirk (capt), J McMahon (R McCaughey 50).

Ref --J Quinn, IRFU.

Irish Independent

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